Let the record show that my sister the ex-mayor's wife has a thing about me cheating her in this estate-settling business. Or so it seems. Sis does not want me in the house unless she is there. While she was away on vacation, for two whole weeks, she did not want me working on the house. Did not want Hick cleaning out the basement. We were only asking in order to speed things along. Not taking stuff. Just getting rid of trash. Newspapers. Clothes to donate. Craft materials that Sis agreed for Hick to disperse at the auction for her cut.
Since Sis didn't want us there. We didn't go. We sat on our duffs and waited until she returned. Never mind that she had mentioned on more than one occasion how she and the ex-mayor had gone by and spent several hours getting rid of stuff. I didn't question that. I guess I had no ulterior motive to project. I was glad that was work I did not have to do. Still. It seems a bit untoward that she would decree that I stay away unless she is there. That was my mom, too, you know. But to keep the peace, I obeyed her wishes.
I figured what Sis didn't know couldn't hurt her. We had all just been there Tuesday night, working on the basement. But Genius called later, and wanted pictures of the bedroom furniture that he might be using in his rental house. I figured I could get up early, go by there while I was in town for a haircut and the bank, snap some pictures for Genius, and be gone before
I was delayed at Terrible Cuts longer than I had planned. It didn't help that the check-in app told me the wait time was 59 minutes. By the time I got there, it was 7 minutes. Or so my phone said. Anyhoo...I was later going out to Mom's house than I originally planned. Sis might be up and stirring, although she does not live in a direct line with my route. I thought I was still safe to run by and take three pictures. Maybe four.
As soon as I turned onto the half-mile road to Mom's house, I met a white SUV. Sis has a white SUV! It didn't look much like her driving, but I couldn't see too well, what with a sharp curve coming up. I think it was a bald man. But I couldn't be sure. My heart was pounding. I waited for my phone to ring and for Sis to grill me on why I was out there. Even though that white SUV was coming from the direction of Mom's house.
I crested the hill onto the flat stretch that goes by Mom's driveway, and saw, in front of me, another white SUV! I couldn't tell if it was Sis. But if it turned in, I could ask what SHE was doing there. Even though I have no decree to keep her away without a chaperone. It went on by. Whew! This sneaking business is not all it's cracked up to be.
Wiping the flop sweat from my brow, I put on my turn signal. WAIT! There was a white car in the driveway! Nobody should be at Mom's house! A white car! Not even Sis's car. I could not pull in, because that white car was barely down the driveway itself. And there was a woman walking around the end of the house taking pictures! WTF?
I sat there in the middle of the road with my blinker on, thinking she'd get the message and move that white car. It's not a busy road, but an outer road segment since the state of Missouri took the land behind the house to put in a stretch of two-lane highway. Still, you don't want to be sitting in the middle of an outer road for an extended period of time.
FINALLY, that picture woman noticed that I was not going away, and walked up to the side of her white car. She looked SO familiar. Like Sis's best friend and neighbor. Then she spoke, and I recognized her as someone we went to school with, in the class between me and Sis, who works right now at my insurance office.
"I don't want to block you in, but I'll have to park sideways because there's not enough room."
"Oh. I'll move. Which side do you park on?"
"I usually just pull straight down."
Picture Woman moved her car about five feet. But at least it gave me room to get off the road.
"Do you two have a brother I don't know about? Because a guy called my office to ask about insuring this house."
"No. That's our cousin. He's buying it."
"I'm just trying to get an idea of replacement costs. Does that fireplace go into two rooms, or one?"
"I'll let you in to look around. I have to take a picture of the bedroom furniture for my son Genius." Let the record show that only last week I was dropping off a renter's insurance application at her office for Genius. So she knows who he is.
We were in the house about five minutes. Picture Woman asked what the appraisal value of the house was.
"Well, you can't tell my cousin!"
"Oh, I guarantee I won't do that. I don't even know what he looks like!"
I might better have asked Picture Woman not to tell my sister that I was in the house. Because she DOES know what Sis looks like!